“Petra, den lugna och behärskade...” : Den stilistiska gestaltningen av Petra von Pahlen som kvinnlig huvudkaraktär i Agnes von Krusenstjernas roman Den blå rullgardinen.
Sammanfattning: This study examines the female protagonist Petra von Pahlen in Agnes von Krusenstjerna’s novel Den blå rullgardinen (The blue blind). The aim of the study is to make a stylistic examination of narrative perspective, relations, and agency in several text passages from the novel, to find out how the language of the text shapes Petra von Pahlen as a female character. To see whether the linguistic choices and functions of the text form Petra as an active or passive person, her relation to four other characters in the novel are examined. The material consists of 39 passages of text taken from 10 chapters of the novel, all of which dealing specifically with Petra’s part of the story. Literary theories used for the study are narratology and systemic-functional grammar. The applied methods for analysing the passages are a selection of syntactic and semantic markers compiled by Staffan Hellberg (1985) for stylistic analysis of narrative perspective in Swedish literary texts, and a selection of the tools for investigation of transitivity and ergativity in texts available through the systemic-functional theory of grammar by Michael Halliday (2014). The results show that the narrative perspective used in the text passages are mostly internal focalization, and that the most frequently used stylistic markers are expressions for perception and reflection, similes, metaphors, and words expressing value. The results also show that Petra is most frequently realized through the participant roles of Senser in mental processes, and Goal in material processes. In the ergative analysis Petra is most frequently realized in non-ergative clauses through the participant role as Medium, both in terms of first and second participant; she is seldom realized as Agent. From the quantitative results of the study, Petra can be viewed as a passive character, however an argumentation based on previous research from the fields of literary science and feminist literary stylistics also suggests an interpretation, where the context and themes in the novel, together with an awareness of the different ‘meanings’ of linguistic features, provide a less powerless position for Petra.
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